Halloween Help

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october picOctober is domestic violence prevention (DV) month. No one likes violence, but it is going to get worse, not better.

 When Jesus said to the teacher, “but men loved darkness instead of light because their deeds were evil” (John 3:1), He was talking about now. Later, the Apostle Peter said, “Your enemy the devil prowls around like a roaring lion looking for someone to devour.”

 There are many forces contributing to school shootings, mass murders and terrorism. My son works at the Navy Yard where last month many were murdered.

  It cannot be stopped, but people can get saved. “Halloween Help” is on the way, and it is just another ministry to reach out to a lost and hurting world with the goals of prevention and getting people helpful information.

   I worked at a school and did for over two decades. We went to great lengths to do anti-drug education and it is all good, but we did little as it related to domestic violence (DV) or sexual assault prevention.

 At the school site where I worked, we talked to kids individually about DV, but systemically, we did little. Most schools are on the anti-bullying bandwagon, but still leave DV out of the discussion.

 There is some dialogue about dating violence at high schools, but help in the home isn’t really happening as far as I know.

October is Domestic Violence Prevention Month. I believe most schools in Imperial Valley and across the nation have Red Ribbon Week, during the last weeks of October to highlight the importance of youth not getting high on drugs and alcohol.

 red ribbon weekThe Red Ribbon activities are mostly in the elementary and junior high programs and it is a positive effort against a very negative situation with the drug/alcohol epidemic still growing.

 Anyone with a brain, not on drugs, will also agree there is often drugs and alcohol involved in all types of violent situations.

  All our community prevention activities in October culminate with Halloween at the end of the month.

Halloween unfortunately, glorifies violence and we miss another opportunity to intervene on the problems of DV, sexual assault and substance abuse.

 We see murder and mayhem in the many movies, TV shows and the collage of costumes.

 Schools throughout the country raise a great deal of money for worthy causes with the Halloween carnivals, but we could also raise some awareness.

The “Halloween Help” (HH) program involves having a Halloween Help booth at school Halloween carnivals. The booth or table would be staffed with volunteers and would provide helpful information to parents and families.

 We have a new Family Justice Center (SJC), to help with all types of victims, so the HH program would also promote the SJC. I have been a Halloween helper for decades, but usually in the booth of my child’s or grandchild’s classroom.

 no more domestic violenceIt was always having fun, raising money and giving away stuff.  That is all good, but I would be more willing to help in a more helpful booth. There are three aspects to the helping process: Who, What and Where.

  Halloween helpers would be volunteers from communities where they reside or the schools where their children have attended.

  They will be concerned people, parents or counselor wanna-bees, survivors or those who have completed some training on resources, active listening and what helps people in crisis.

 The HH would be wherever we are invited. It could be helpful and I hope it doesn’t sound scary to you. What is really scary, are the victims who will not get help, this year and next!

  If you are interested, call Jim at 353-5059 or email him at shinnjc@sbcglobal.net.  Be a helper this Halloween!